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The good shepherd. March 12, 2013

Posted by ourfriendben in pets, wit and wisdom.
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Silence Dogood here. Our friend Ben and I grew up with dogs and have now had three dogs together, and our pre-Shiloh experience has been consistent: Our dogs were wonderful, our dogs were loving, and of course we adored them, but our dogs had not one ancestral or breed instinct to share between them.

Our beloved black German shepherd, Pioneer Hawk’s Haven Shiloh von Shiloh Special (that’s just Shiloh to you), therefore came as a considerable shock. Shiloh is first and foremost a shepherd, and her breed instincts shape her behavior. Yes, she’s a happy, joyous, loving dog who adores romping with her toys, performing “tricks” for treats, and generally lolling happily in our presence. But, unlike all the other dogs we’ve had and known, she knows she’s a dog with a job, and that job is to be a shepherd, to protect her flock.

Shiloh is happiest when her entire flock—me, OFB, our cats, Plutarch the Parrot, and our parakeets—are all in the same room, so she can comfortably keep an eye on us. She herds her toys into a tight group where she can keep an eye on them as well.

But human life isn’t like that. If, say, I’m in our home office on my computer, and OFB is at the kitchen table on his computer, Shiloh will dutifully split the difference, lying in the living room where she can easily rush to my or OFB’s defense should the need warrant it. If OFB is outside and I’m inside, Shiloh will rush to every window and door, trying to locate OFB, and alternate her patrolling with rushing back to me to make sure all is well.

Shiloh does her job beautifully, the job she was born to do. She loves us, and we love her so. How blessed we are to be in the care of such a good shepherd!

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